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University of Washington student says Trump should also be pushing for Canadian wall

There was a major controversy earlier this week when some UW students put up a plywood wall calling it the “Trump wall.” Other students countered by protesting the demonstration.

KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson listened to both sides of the argument: Chevy Swanson, a UW sophomore who is president of the school’s Students for Trump group, and senior Marcelo Ramirez, a member of Huskies for Bernie.

Related: Dori’s advice for Republicans who don’t support Trump: Vote Libertarian

Ramirez said that his religion is the US constitution and that everyone has the right under the First Amendment to their own form of protest.

“I think when we talked the other day it was a really well-rounded example of well-educated students on both sides … who are expressing, politely, their views of the current political situation,” he said.

Here are some of the highlights:

Chevy Swanson: “The wall is probably one of Donald Trump’s most notable issues. It’s what people think of when they think of Trump. So when Trump basically got the Republican nominee we wanted to do an event in support of him and we thought that would be the best way.”

Dori Monson: But you knew it might cause some problems.

Chevy Swanson: “There are some social implications to it when everyone is so against him … If you are a public Trump supporter at the University of Washington it can be a little hard to get people to trust your opinion without first being able to talk to them about it because it creates a very negative first opinion for people.”

Marcelo Ramirez: “When myself and other Latino students here on the University saw this wall, we saw it as a symbol of desired oppression, honestly.”

“How do you know where you’re going if you don’t know where you’re coming from? In the past, we’re looking at a party that once told Gorbachev to please tear down a wall, and now the frontrunner in 2016 is blasting away the primaries by saying we need to erect a wall. I really don’t see how that defines the melting pot that is the United States.”

Swanson: “I don’t think that anyone is going to say that Donald Trump is a big member of the Party so much. They are very different walls and you have to say that we’re not just putting up a border wall where there is nothing there, there is already a fence there. We have already tried and made very poor moves to making that border stronger with just a very small fence. I don’t think there is anything wrong with trying to make that stronger. It already exists, we are just making it better.”

Ramirez: “I would be able to respect (Trump’s position) if it were being applied appropriately. If he’s wanting to build a wall on the southern border with Latin America, then there should be a wall on the northern border with Canada. Because Canada is also sending undocumented immigrants, not obviously in the amount they are in Latin America, but if you’re going to put a wall in one place, how do you justify not putting it in another knowing there is also undocumented immigration?”

To that, Dori said there is a need to prioritize and that the undocumented immigrants coming from southern dwarf those coming from the north.

Monson: “Trump’s point has been, if we can keep out people who come into this country illegally, we’ll also keep out the percentage of them that commit those crimes and that would be a good thing.”

Swanson: “The wall stops the worst of the people, I’d say. I think that’s why the wall is very important. I think that’s why the wall will be pretty effective.”

Ramirez said if Trump is truly concerned with keeping out the percentage of undocumented immigrants who are coming into the country, then he needs to also be looking at the “push factors.”

Ramirez: “If he’s serious about diminishing undocumented immigrants, before throwing the idea of a wall, consider changing up the approach in this failed war on drugs that creates a bunch of mini Al Capone’s throughout different provinces in Mexico, Central America, and South America. Mr. Trump really doesn’t address what he wants to do in terms of foreign policy to aid the actual fight against these entities. Putting up a wall, by itself, you’re not really solving too many problems because you’re still going to have the consumption and incentive the US has because of their drug recreational use. The cartels will find a way.”

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